Archive for the ‘Productivity’ Category

A Place For Everything

Summary – Seiton : A place for everything

You are late for work, and to make things worse, you forget where you left your key. You spent about 5 minutes just trying to figure the whereabout. Now that’s 5 minutes a day, in a year you lose about 30 hours just trying to figure out where exactly that damn key.

now imagine you forget other things 🙂

There is one tool established by the Japanese that has been used all over the world. People pay hundreds just to learn about it. Seriously, I’ve seen seminars highlighting the tools as their key points. But fear not my friends, I’m going to spill it here for you guys FOC

The tool is called 5S. I’m very sure most of you are already familiar with it. Basically the 5S consists of Seiri, Seiton, Seiso, Seiketsu and Shitsuke. Google them for more info.

But I’m more interested to illustrate how Seiton works. Seiton is roughly translated to Orderliness which basically means “Everything must have its own place”

Look on your table now. There should be a pencil in left side of the table, several pens on the other side. If there is also a cup of evaporated coffee there, you are beyond help 🙂 (kidding). Anyway, abiding to the principle of Seiton means that you should have a proper place for the pencils and pen. All pens must be put in there, no exception. If you have finished your work, put the pen back there. This way, when you’re looking for a pen, you know exactly where to find it. No other place. That’s Seiton.

Apply that to the important things in your life. You can’t categorize everything, if not, your home will be changed immediately to a warehouse. Just the important things like documents, clothes, small change. and maybe remote control.

Remember there are only two rules to Seiton

  • One place for it.. No other place
  • Put it back there when you’re done

– I wonder –
Do you have a specific place for your things?

———– Personal Note ————
The reason I come up with this topic is because yesterday, I asked the clerk to find me a document. And guess what they took almost 30 minutes just to locate it.

Previously I had advised them on how to be organized particularly document wise, but I think old habit is very hard to die 🙂

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Yesterday was my day off, and I have a whole lot of plans to do, House to clean, bills to pay, Harry Potter to read. I spend almost my whole day doing 2 out of 3. I bet you know which one I ignore. Yes.. House cleaning.

I know no one is going to clean the house if not me. And I know sooner or later, I will be the one who will do it. In the end, I started cleaning my house at around 10.00pm and I’m supposed to go to bed at around 1.00 am. This is a real example of procrastination.

Basically we all know procrastination. It is when we skip one task (which is usually the most important and not fun) to do another task (which is more fun) or not doing any task at all (which is super fun hehe). And it has been illustrated in almost all self-help book on how to overcome it; the whole to-do list, prioritize etc.

I am not going to reinvent the wheel and elaborate on that. I am more interested on how we, the real people, handle it. This is what I did –

  • Smaller But Frequent Rewards – After every 5 pages of Harry Potter I read, I will get up and do 2 small things; wash the dishes and take out the garbage.
  • Procrastinate Consciously – Sometimes when I really hate the task, and it is not that important. I choose to procrastinate conciously. For example, I have to prepare monthly maintenance report, which is very tedious. My mind go blank already with no mood what so ever to do it. I know for sure that if I force myself doing it, the report will be badly written and I may have to do it again. In that case, I usually decide to procrastinate without any guilt, and play that damn addictive “pikacu” game my wife introduced me. Later, I found out that I am able to do the report effectively for about 15 minutes before I’m out of mood again. At least 15 minutes of work done right?
  • Lie to Self – Working under pressure sometimes do give me a bit motivation to overcome procrastinate. Usually I just lie to myself saying that in 2 hours my manager will be coming for tea at my house. I repeatedly convince myself that that will happen. And then you can see I work at 110% efficiency.

I still believe procrastinate is a bad attitude to have. But it will always be there. And sometimes it wins.

So do you guys have any secret way to tackle procrastination? motivate yourself to do things you dont like?

————— Personal Note ————————–
My worst case of procrastination is when I was studying in the university. I need to submit all my reports the next day, and I still had to do 14 weekly reports all in one night. The pressure that night was so overwhelming that I even thought that this might be how people who commit suicide feels like. Not that I have that idea. I finished all the reports in time, but the lecturer failed me. That was one lesson I will remember for the rest of my life.

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